Struggling for a good extraction...

Beginner and pro baristas share tips and tricks for making espresso.

#1: Post by ZebcoKid »

Hello All,

My daily go to is Peet's Espresso Forte. I dose 17g in and 34g out at 30 seconds. This produces a most delicious espresso for my taste.

I follow that with Peet's Decaffeinated French Roast. I have tried the same dose. I'm finding that it is running fast. I've tried making the grind finer, more coarse, increasing the in dose to 18g. It keeps running fast. I mean like 45 in 25 seconds.

Can you point me in a direction?

Thank you.



#2: Post by SandraF »

What grinder do you use for espresso? What is the roast date on the beans?
Can you grind any finer than you are now?


#3: Post by BodieZoffa »

Based on decaf I have used in the past it loses that oomph much faster than 'standard' coffees typically used for espresso. As in half the usable shelf and grinding finer, etc. did little to change that.

ZebcoKid (original poster)

#4: Post by ZebcoKid (original poster) »

Sandra F,

Thank you for your inquiry.

I am using a Baratza Encore for a grinder. The roast date is January 21.

I did try grinding finer and it clogged up.




#5: Post by John49 replying to ZebcoKid »

Trying to adjust the Encore for espresso will drive you nuts. The Vario would work for espresso.


#6: Post by ping279 »

Decaf almost always requires a higher dose and/or finer grind. It's totally normal what you're experiencing. In the past when I have used decaf, I always did the same thing. Normally required a large adjustment in grind size and sometimes a dose increase as well. You can search around for why decaf requires a finer grind but from what I've seen, it has something to do with the decaffeination process and how it affects the beans' structure.

My suggestion based on your current settings, would be to keep dose at least at 18g and maybe higher depending on your basket size. Then just keep grinding finer until you reach an acceptable flow rate. If you're having trouble with it being too quick, I wouldn't be scared to make a large jump in grind size to try and find the "too fine" end of the spectrum for the beans. Then you can work backwards towards more coarse.

I did notice you said when you tried grinding finer, your grinder clogged up. In that case, not much you can do beyond increasing dose. Not sure on your basket prep but you can also try the Weiss distribution technique (WDT) if you don't already. This will help the extraction consistency and will increase puck pressure.

ZebcoKid (original poster)

#7: Post by ZebcoKid (original poster) »


Thank you for the generous response. Good to know my experience is normal...and by association, me too. Phew!

I mis-wrote when I said my grinder clogged. I meant the basket, i.e., too fine.

I'll go back to the drawing board and work backwards as you suggest.

With gratitude,



#8: Post by Nickriders »

If you have a challenge going in between bring seize, the dose is your only way to go, a precision one like vst or ims will help. This way you can increase the dose with the same grind seize but up it to 20g and go from there. It's also a lot cheaper than upgrading the grinder. That's why I have a 15-18 and 20g, enjoy the journey!

ZebcoKid (original poster)

#9: Post by ZebcoKid (original poster) »


I do have a IMS 18g. Looks like a 20g is going to be added to my coffee making quiver.


Thank you.


ZebcoKid (original poster)

#10: Post by ZebcoKid (original poster) »


Just closing the loop. Although my 20g filter hasn't arrived yet, I'm pleased to say that 19g packed into my IMS 18g produced a most delightful espresso this AM. 20 will be even better!

Thanks again.